Baylor Student Wins Prestigious German Scholarship

July 25, 2006

by Meghan Merchant, student newswriter

A desire to be different pushed Kandra Stauffer to study German in high school rather than Spanish, like the rest of her peers. Now, the Baylor University junior from New Holland, Pa., is the recipient of the prestigious German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) scholarship, which will enable her to study abroad in Germany during the 2007 spring semester.

The DAAD is a publicly-funded independent organization that provides scholarships for undergraduate students from the United States and Canada who want to study in Germany. The grantees stay for a semester to a full academic year, either to study, for internships or for senior thesis research. Stauffer was chosen by a panel of experts in higher education as one of 62 recipients of the award. This is the second consecutive year a Baylor German major has received this award.

Stauffer, a German and anthropology major, heard about the opportunity through her German professors at Baylor and a student who was a past winner of the scholarship. She will study at the University of Frieburg in southwestern Germany from March to July 2007 - the German spring semester.

At the suggestion of Dr. Andrew Wisely, associate professor and director of the division of German and Russian at Baylor, Stauffer will study a German coming-of-age ceremony called jugendweihe, a ritual implemented in East Germany under the communist regime and still celebrated today.

"Especially in the wake of the secularization of Germany, it's an alternative to Catholic confirmation," Stauffer said.

Her study will meet the field requirements for her anthropology major. Stauffer also will live with a host family for a month during her time abroad and is excited to "see Europe through their eyes" and immerse herself in the culture she has studied.

Stauffer is a member of Klub Deutsch and was a community leader in South Russell Residence Hall during the 2005-06 school year. She is also the recipient of the prestigious Delta Phi Alpha scholarship in the sophomore-junior category and will use the stipend toward her study in Freiburg. Delta Phi Alpha is a national German honor society for advanced students who have completed upper-level courses and have a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0, with a GPA in German courses of at least 3.5

For more information, contact professor Rita Abercrombie in the German department at (254) 710-6013.

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